Dauvet Gold Leaf
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Genuine Gold Leaf is 3-3/8 inches x 3-3/8 inches square ( 85 mm ) and is sold in units called packs containing 500 leaves. A pack is divided into 20 books with each book containing 25 leaves. Each pack of 500 leaves covers a surface area of 39 square feet without waste or overlap. The Gilder can determine the percentage of waste based on the complexity of the object and his or her own expertise in laying leaf. If, for example, the surface is very ornate with deep crevices, it will certainly take more leaf than the same size of a flat surface. See our leaf coverage chart below.
Loose Leaf / Surface Leaf
A book of loose leaf is assembled by placing each piece of leaf between pieces of thin rouged paper. The Gilder can then remove one leaf at a time without distributing the remaining leaves. It is removed from the book with a gilder's tip, a flat natural-hair brush. Each booklet contains 25 leaves and comes in packs of 20 books for a total of 500 leaves. Leaves are available in different measurements and thicknesses. Loose leaf can be applied with water or oil gilding techniques and is ideal for restoration and detailed surfaces.
Patent Leaf / Transfer Leaf
Patent gold leaf, also referred to as transfer leaf, is gold mounted to special tissue paper by a pressure process. A book of patent gold leaf is assembled by placing each unit of gold leaf and tissue between pieces of thin rouged paper. The gilder can then remove one leaf at a time without distributing the remaining leaves. Patent gold leaf is removed from the book without the aid of a gilder's tip. The leaf will stay on the tissue until it is pressed onto the prepared surface and the tissue backing is removed. This form of gold leaf is necessary for outdoor work or where conditions would make loose leaf unmanageable. Patent gold leaf is not suitable for water gilding and is best suited for flat surfaces.
Patent gold leaf is sensitive to changes in temperature and humidity and needs to be stored properly. Store patent leaf in a damp environment of about 80% humidity wrapped in plastic wrap. This helps to prevent the moisture content of the tissue paper from fluctuating. Patent leaf may become loose on the tissue paper if stored in a dry warm environment. To correct this problem, the book of patent leaf needs to be stored in a humid environment under pressure to "remount" the leaf to the paper. If the leaf were stored in a very hot and humid environment, the leaf may adhere too tightly to the paper. To correct this problem, store the patent leaf in a refrigerator or a dry cool place.